Husband's last camping trip

Husband's last camping trip

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas 2013

Merry Christmas.

Today, I will take pictures and treasure them.  Memories.  For me only.

It's kind of a sad Christmas, knowing what I know, but, it will just be different next year, that's all. 

Changes.  A Season for everything.

So, I will smile today, relishing in the warmth of family.  Taking it all in.

Today, as we all gather with our families, celebrating the birth of Christ, take it all in.  The smells, the laughter, children running around with their new toys, the mess, the wonderment of what Christmas is really about and memories of Christmas's past, relish in remembering.  All of it.

May your day be Blessed and filled with peace.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Just doing it

I know it's been awhile since my last post.  Just don't have much to post about anymore.

Alzheimer's continues to be the dominant force in my household.  There are no words to follow that statement.

While we will have some moments where husband is slightly in his right mind, it's only fleeting and he slips back into his quiet world.

He tells me that the dogs love to get on his bed, where they will fight for a spot on the bed, closest to him.  He says he loves it when I am getting him ready for a bath, the dogs will wrestle with him as he tries to get out of bed.  He says that one will be up at his head, one will be pulling on his arms and one will be at his feet.  He seems very happy when he tells me these stories abut the dogs.  He says the dogs love him so.  Only one problem:

We have one dog.  Not three.

As I was cleaning house yesterday, I walked into the hallway, looked into the bedroom, checking on husband.  There he was, "playing" with the dogs.  My dog was in the living room, with me.

To say that is disturbing is an understatement.

I woke up in the middle of the night the other night, to find husband standing up, holding on to his walker and asking someone(?) in a loud voice, "Can someone tell me where the bathroom is?"

He talks a lot to someone.  He will laugh with them, as if they share a secret.

I gave husband an early Christmas gift.   A new jacket.  Later, as I was taking him outside, I was putting the new jacket on him and he smiled and asked, "Is this new?  I've never seen this before."

So, if you're wondering how I am doing, please read the above paragraphs, again.

I feel as if I am operating on automatic pilot these days.  I just do and don't think about why I am doing. 

Christmas.  I don't feel great about it, nor, do I feel bad about it.  Lately, I don't think I feel much of anything anymore.   

If I had to stop and analyze my feelings, I think I will go mad.  It's better to be on automatic pilot.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Christmas Wish

Marching on.  Gearing up for Christmas.  Ho hum.  I'm not as into the Holidays as I thought I was going to be, but, I'm not that bad either. 

Husband continues to be in his own world.  There have been some really sad moments, but, for the most part, life (or lack thereof) is moving right along.  You can really see the damage this disease has done.

When you talk to him, his eyes do not focus on you.  He will look in your direction, but always looks slightly to the right and upward.  It's disturbing.

He has, for some crazy reason, thinks he is supposed to lay on his bed at the foot of the bed.  He will put his head on the footboard, with his neck resting on the hard metal footboard.  And, he's comfortable doing that.  He also thinks he has always slept at the end of the bed.  I will get him at the head part of the bed, leave the room, go check on him within 10 minutes, and there he is, sound asleep, at the foot of the bed.

Tish came over yesterday.  He didn't know who she was. 

He is obsessed with a catalog we have.  It's a sporting catalog, with everything from hunting knives, to guns, bows and arrows and just a bunch of miscellaneous things for camping and hunting.  He has gone through it so much, all day, every day, that most of the pages are dog eared.  He tells me it's broken. 

In fact, everything is broken.  And, he wants me to fix it all.

Most days, everything is the same.  We've gotten into a routine, with this change in him.  He is, most days, oblivious to everyone and everything around him.  When it's time to eat, I will guide him to the table.  Once the food is set in front of him, I guide his hand to his fork.  He always looks at the fork and his food as if he's seeing it for the first time.  Always acts surprised that food appeared in front of him. 

So, for the most part, the Holidays are upon us, and, it's OK.  I'm not angry, I'm not sad.  I'm not happy, I'm just here.  Taking care of husband, counting the days until this is all over with.

That is my Christmas Wish.  Just let it be over.

Friday, December 6, 2013

"Hey, Joe"

I feel so bad for not posting in over a week.  I've gotten into a slump and come here each day to post, but, then, X out of it.  I have Alzheimer's to thank for that. 

Our Thanksgiving was wonderful.  I finally got the rest of our dinner and told myself to smile, think positive and put on a happy face.  Turns out, Pat & Christine had come up from Albuquerque and had been staying with Justin &M Anne in Parker, CO.  It was a surprise for me and it couldn't have been better.

The food was good, the company even better.  We laughed, told funny stories, shed some tears, Pat got a nice fire going in the fireplace, helped me with husband, watched some football and then we turned on Chopped on the Food Network and watched several episodes of that.  We looked at all the sale papers for black Friday, laughed some more and I took it all in, loving every minute of it.

They all came back on Saturday and we went up to Manitou Springs for dinner.  Walking the streets was magical.  Christmas lights were on, it was bitter cold, but, I didn't care.  They all took turns pushing husband in his wheelchair.  We would stop and look at shops, then, on to eat dinner.

I was so sad to say goodbye.  But, oh, what a wonderful few days it was.

I had to go to the store Wednesday, late in the afternoon.  We had a big snowstorm, and it was 3 degrees outside.  Walking up to the entrance, I saw the Christmas trees, with the smell overwhelming me.  There was a young guy tending to the trees, so, I walked up and asked how much they were.  He showed me the prices and before I knew it, I had bough a real Christmas tree!  He put it on top of my car, tied it to the rack, then asked me if my husband could bring it in from the car.  That took me by surprise, but, after fumbling around for words, I smiled and said, "of course."  He smiled and said, "Oh good, because, this tree is heavy and I know you couldn't get it off your car."

Once I got home, I looked at the tree and thought, "Well, you got yourself into a pickle now."  Went and got my kitchen scissors, back out to the car, stood there for a minute and busted out laughing.  There was no way I was going to get this Christmas tree off of my car.

Just then, two of the maintenance workers came by in one f the golf carts they use here.  I hollered out, "Hey Joe."  He stopped, I motioned for him toward me.  He stopped, turned around and came up to the car.  He looked at me, than at this big Christmas tree tied to my car.  He said, "What did you do now, Sue?"  I was laughing and said, "On a whim, I bought this tree and now I don't know how to get it off my car."

Thanks to Joe and Jeff, it is now sitting on my patio, in the freezing cold, waiting to be brought in.  Tish brought some decorations for the tree yesterday.  I had nothing.  She said they would be back tomorrow so Jace could put in on a stand and bring it in the apartment. 

As far as husband is concerned, well,  what can I say?  He is fading from me.  He is in his own world most of the time, but,  just to make life interesting, just when I think he's gone for good, he will surprise me with, "remember when.....?"

Looking at the tree on the patio yesterday, he said, clear as a bell, "The tree is pretty.  Glad you bought it.  I won't be here next year, so, remember how pretty this tree was next year, OK?"

Just what am I supposed to do with that piece of information, I thought,  So, I smiled and said, "I will, honey."

So, tomorrow night, when the tree is brought in and decorated to the hilt, I will turn on the lights and relish in this special Christmas tree.  I will savor every moment, file in my brain every detail of this tree.  I will post a picture of this special tree for all to see. 

I believe this tree called out to me.  And, on a whim, I bought it.  And, brought it home for husband.